Publisher: Scholastic Canada
Released: June 1st, 2011
Genre: YA dystopia
Review copy from publisher
Smallpox epidemics, floods, droughts — for sixteen-year-old Lucy, the end of the world came and went, taking 99% of the population with it. As the weather continues to rage out of control, and Sweepers clean the streets of plague victims, Lucy survives alone in the wilds of Central Park, hunting and foraging for food. But when she is rescued from a vicious pack of hunting dogs by a mysterious boy named Aidan, she reluctantly realizes she cannot continue on her own. She joins Aidan’s band of survivors, yet a new danger awaits her: The Sweepers are looking for her, and they’ve laid a trap. There’s something special about Lucy, and the Sweepers will stop at nothing to have her in their clutches.
Holy snappin’ TURTLES! This book starts off with a shot of adrenaline and doesn’t stop until the last word. Seriously. There’s no preamble or anything. Jo starts us off right in the middle of the action and I DUG IT. Majorly. This is the best kind of dystopia in my opinion and Ashes, Ashes was very reminiscent of The Hunger Games and The Forest of Hands and Teeth in action, pacing and OMG factor.
Okay, Lucy was one kick-ass heroine. And I loved the back and forth snarkiness between her and Aidan when they first met and through most of the book. The dynamic between the two of them was pitch perfect.
Maybe I’m sadistic or something, but I LOVE when in dystopian literature and movies the main characters overcomes adversity and find themselves gathered with others, apparently “saved” and then BAM! more badness comes along, usually from somewhere unexpected. Lucy is on her own then meets up with Aidan and other survivors. Things should be grand. Strength in numbers, right? Yeah, so, so not the case. Cuz there’s these Sweeper dudes tracking Lucy and they want her bad.
This book was ooey, gooey fun and I whipped through it so fast that I had to force myself to slow down at times. It has EVERYTHING I love about dystopian novels: a wicked cool heroine, plague, natural disasters, plots within plots and twisted villains.
Honestly, folks, I can’t recommend it enough.
Okay, if you are in Canada, then this giveaway is for you! I have one copy of Ashes, Ashes to give away. You don’t have to follow the blog or tweet or video tape yourself fighting the elements or anything. You just have to answer one little question: What would you rather face – plague or natural disaster? You can also throw in why if you want. Contest will end June 24th and I’ll be randomly choosing a winner.